Winter Fishing Tips

Discussion in 'Bay Fishing' started by John The Bass, Sep 5, 2019.

  1. John The Bass

    John The Bass Active Member

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    I guess this is kinda early but I would like to hear tips for winter fishing, especially January. I have heard that bonito are in the bay in the winter, but I have never seen one. What I really want to know is if I can target sharks and rays at night. If not those, what else can I target?
     
  2. JeremyFWright

    JeremyFWright Well-Known Member

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    I have no specific experience with bonito so sorry, but I do know that I have caught some big spotties and big halibuts in the winter. The hali in my profile pic was from Christmas eve last year. Seems to me that the eel grass seems to die down which can actually be somewhat nice because it's a bit easier to fish low and slow with things like swimjigs, jigs, and dark sleepers. I've also caught some good rays in the winter on squid and macks.
    I don't think the winter fishing is hugely different from spring and summer if I'm honest. Fish do seem to be more sluggish as the water cools down, but they still feed. I have still gotten crankbait fish in the winter, and swimbait fish in the winter. Just fewer bites all around. Swimbait fishing seems to turn into low and slow grinding the bottom and structure as opposed to fast wind over eel grass as it often can be in the summer and fall.
    Hope this helps!
     
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  3. John The Bass

    John The Bass Active Member

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    Thanks. Is this from shore or from kayak or boat?
     
  4. dj thrillz

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    Nah, no bonito. Unless you target the homegrown ones in the back bay.
    My winter thing is spotty fishing, bigger fish, bigger numbers(normally).
     
  5. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach
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    Winter is the right time for s and r in the back of MB.. saying
     
  6. JeremyFWright

    JeremyFWright Well-Known Member

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    I'm all on shore sadly. Fished from a boat a little bit, but not much. 99% of my bay stuff is shore pounding.
    1 thing to add - I seem to have found luck fishing jerkbaits in the cooler months, especially if you can get them to suspend. Because saltwater not only is usually warmer than freshwater in the winter but also is a lot denser (making lures float more) you need to mess around with the hooks and split rings (or maybe even lead strips) to get them to suspend. I usually go a hook size up than stock to get a jerkbait to suspend. Size 4's on a 110mm jerkbait like a lucky craft or vision 110 for example instead of size 6's which is stock. The noise and action of a suspending jerk seems to draw out the fish sometimes, especially if you can work it over structure or some grass.
    I wish I could contribute more info! I've only been spotty fishing / bay fishing for 3 years now, and only hard in the past year and a half, and SD and MB aren't my local bays. I'll be back in january for winter break from college so I'll be stoked to put some more time in this winter and work on figuring out the bite!
     
  7. dj thrillz

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    Well out of all my years of logs, January is always the best month day or night for bassin. So you should be in for a treat ;)
     
  8. JeremyFWright

    JeremyFWright Well-Known Member

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    Now that’s what I like to hear haha
     
  9. Easy619

    Easy619 Tug Addict
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    Decembers have been slow for me, but January has been good for whatever reason. This year, January was one of my most productive months in the surf for big bass and croakers
     
  10. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach
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    We caught some tanks in January..
     
  11. Easy619

    Easy619 Tug Addict
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    For real...monster sand bass were on a good one at that one spot
     
  12. Tmaio123

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    Shhhhh! LMAO JK
     
  13. Bear6813

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    Hey John,
    I pretty much fish specifically for mud marlin and grinners only all the time. I'll put together a little cheat sheet if you will, of the ins and outs of shark and ray fishing our bays and beaches for you. If you have any specific questions shoot me a PM. Tight lines to ya,
    Bear
     
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